Poor 2013 MBP performance

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Habitus, Mar 2, 2014.

  1. Habitus macrumors 6502a


    Feb 26, 2009
    Where ever my life takes me...
    I have a 2013 13" MBP with 4GB of RAM (see attached).

    I have a 5400RPM 1TB drive with about 83GB left.

    My MBP's performance has decreased over the past year and I am wondering what, if any, actions can I perform to improve it?

    Should I purchase more RAM or should I purchase a separate SSD (replace optical drive) to install the operating system and applications?


    Habitus :apple:

    Attached Files:

  2. wingsabr macrumors 6502


    Dec 13, 2008
    SSD or hybrid drive would give the most noticeable performance over the 5400rpm HDD. Memory would be a good next step, but won't visibly increase "speed" in your day to day use.
  3. Kariya macrumors 68000


    Nov 3, 2010
    Solid State Hybrid drive and double your RAM. 4GB of RAM in 2014 for a 64-bit OS is more often than not a bag of hurt.
  4. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    Impossible to say whether RAM or an SSD would benefit as you never mentioned what you actually do with your computer.

    Also, it's good practice to keep spinning platter hard drives with at least 20% free space, the last 20% or so memory is really much slower than the rest of the drive as the reading head has to travel further between blocks.
  5. xraydoc macrumors demi-god


    Oct 9, 2005
    Um, isn't the RAM soldered in? Not upgradable?

    Never mind. You have the non-retina one...
  6. Blondie :) macrumors 6502a

    Blondie :)

    May 12, 2010
    Prescott, AZ
    Definitely RAM first, as it's a cheaper fix. You said you only have 83GB of 1TB HDD though, so technically you have less than 10% free HDD space (which is never recommended).

    Clean up anything you can on your HDD to get more than 100GB free space. If it's still slow, upgrade to 8GB RAM (Mavericks is a hog). If it's still slow after that, you'll probably need to upgrade to a SSD, which will be a pretty penny for that size.
  7. simon48 macrumors 65816


    Sep 1, 2010
    Mavericks is better on RAM usage then any recent Mac OS.
  8. groove-agent, Mar 8, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2014

    groove-agent macrumors 6502a


    Jan 13, 2006
  9. yjchua95 macrumors 604

    Apr 23, 2011
    GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
    Get an SSD. It's way faster (I'm talking about boot times of just 11 seconds). It's worth the expensive cost.

    And 4GB of RAM....it seems pretty marginal for today's standards. Up it to 8GB.
  10. BigBeast macrumors 6502a

    Mar 6, 2009
    First RAM, then an SSD if you want.

    Reasoning: (For the sake of saving myself time, I've copied & pasted something I've previously wrote for another member.) Upgrading to an SSD prior to installing the proper amount of RAM would reduce the life of the SSD, and still be quite slow. First, with inadequate RAM, the SSD will be utilized as virtual memory, offsetting the lack of physical RAM. By doing this, the computer will write tasks that are normally written to RAM, to the SSD. Because SSDs have only a finite amount of writes available to each transistor, you'll effectively shorten its lifetime, and increase the risk of data loss. Additionally, even fast SSDs pale in comparison to the speed of RAM – ~500MB/s in SSDs vs. ~23 GB/s in RAM (@1333 MHz). Therefore, the best solution would be to install the appropriate amount of RAM first, followed by an SSD upgrade. Once the proper amount of RAM is installed, an SSD will truly shine.

    While Mavericks does a good job with memory management, if you fully utilize your RAM with open applications, it doesn't matter how efficient Mavericks is with RAM reuse, because active apps are still utilizing said RAM.
  11. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    You don't really describe what you do, so its impossible to say if ram will help. You also don't provide details on the state of your computer, i.e., are you incurring a lot of swap outs.

    Ram is a no brainer in some sense but if you're not running low on system resources an upgrade of ram won't improve performance. I'd go with the SSD only from the fact it will improve performance for all disk bound operations.

    If you can do both then that would be ideal

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